An editorial by Eugene Cisneros

It's a sad commentary, but true.  Some unethical people have been selling fake Trinitite on the web and online auctions.  We were recently offered some of this material as well.  If it's too green, too translucent or too inexpensive to be true, it probably isn't real Trinitite!  So how does the collector know if a specimen is authentic?  Well, usually the only means for the collector to eliminate the fake stuff is to use a sensitive dosimeter and take a reading to verify that residual induced radiation exists.  This will be very small, but it can be detected.  This will not rule out the possibility that clever fakers will not add some small amount of weakly radioactive material to their formula.  The only way to be 100% certain of authenticity is by means of nuclear energy spectroscopy.  I have worked under contract of the Department of Energy, at a national laboratory, for the past 37 years and have the resources to perform these tests.  Thus, we at Mineralogical Research Company can assure you of the authenticity of all of the Trinitie specimens that we make available to you - - - we guarantee our specimens 100%.

The energy spectra, below, shows the radioactive isotope Cesium 137 photopeak at ~666 keV.  This radionuclide has a half life of 30.2 years and is one of several unique byproducts of nuclear fission or atomic detonations.  It is present in all authentic Trinitite specimens.

Data produced by Canberra Gamma Energy Spectrometer using a Germanium detector.


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